127 illegal churches have now been legalized by the Egyptian government.

A law had been passed in 2016 in regards to the process of legalization. Thousands of churches were being built without permits, in hopes of being built before the government possibly changed their minds.

Prior to the law being passed, it was notoriously difficult to gain state approval and, therefore, congregations could find themselves at risk of prosecution.

Since the law passed, some 1,021 have been granted permits by the committee.

While the committee still has many churches to legalize, this is a promising start for a country in which Coptic Christians have faced fierce levels of violence and persecution for decades.

Open Doors USA says, the country's Christians still face daily persecution from groups within the Islamic-majority population, as well as mistreatment from the government itself.

Open Doors says the other culture's in Egypt, "fuels discrimination and creates an environment causing the state to be reluctant to respect and enforce the fundamental rights of Christians."